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Edited 11 months, 28 days ago

Poll: Is there a lack of romance in video games? (288 votes)

Yes 32%
No 25%
I want more romance in video games than there already is 32%
I want less romance in video games than there already is 11%

This topic came to my mind when I was looking at Konami's survey for the Metal Gear Rising game on their webpage. They asked if there should be more 'romance' in the sequel.

And then I realized, that there is hardly any romance involved in video games nowadays. Most of them are too busy with saving the world type of scenarios. I for one can't recall any games at the moment where romance was the primary driver of the story or had a prominent role in the story. Mass Effect and Halo 4 probably and just a teeny bit in MGS4.

Why is such an obvious story material left out in video games?

#101 Posted by WiredFolf (84 posts) -

I'll defend the Bioware romances in the Garrus romantic option in ME2. I actually thought that was the best romance of the game because it felt like real character growth for him. It's funny in an awkward sense but grows more touching and personal.

I would like to see better romances in games but like many have said it's hard and has the tendency of being forced into a narrative much like a hollywood movie. I'll use Silent Hill: Homecoming as my example of worst implied romance in a video game.

I think what it really boils down to is how skilled the writers and developed are about working such emotional elements into a game. Naughty Dog currently stands as my best example of natural, believable characters so if there were to be a game with a clear romantic story I consider them to be the best people for the job.

#102 Posted by EveretteScott (1449 posts) -

Well, you're in luck, it looks like there's going to be a heap of Romans in the next Total War game

Ohhh, romance, uh, never mind then...

Well you have me all hot and bothered, please continue.

#103 Edited by pyromagnestir (4254 posts) -

Just you wait till I make my game about me and Drew and our future love! It will be my love letter in game form and I will send him a copy and he will play it and it will sweep him off his feet and we will live happily ever after! That is the games true ending. Just you wait! It will be the most romantic game/anything ever!

#104 Posted by Gruebacca (506 posts) -

Doesn't get any better than this.

But seriously, good romance requires the most attention in a work. The entire point of a good romance is the romance, and games don't translate to that very well because, well, the point of a game is to be a game. What kind of gameplay could accurately translate to the interactions of romantic love, and if that does exist could you convince the mainstream gamer to play it? Yeah, To the Moon is a great example, but it's not like there's a ton of games like that out there.

#105 Posted by NMC2008 (1232 posts) -

No thanks to the romance stuff, the only romance in a game I enjoyed was Viva Pinata.

#106 Posted by Random45 (1065 posts) -

I think there's plenty of romance in games, but there's barely any well written romance in games. Take Bioware for instance, their romance stories leave a LOT to be desired - it always just boils down to talking to the girl until you can sleep with her, that's it. Let's not even get into Blizzard and what they consider to be "romance". I honestly can't think of a game at the moment that had a good and believable romantic subplot.

Man, looking through the thread, it seems like i'm not the first to use Bioware romance as an example. Bummer.

#107 Posted by Fearbeard (825 posts) -

@tangoup: I seem to remember some sort of Otacon romance angle as well as the relationship between Meryl and the guy who keeps shitting himself. The melodrama in the game goes far beyond just the romance angles though. Like the little girl and her egg cooking scenes. I don't know. I'm trying to block all the horrible writing of MGS 4 from my memory.

#108 Edited by Yummylee (21305 posts) -
@pete0r said:

I was going to write about the lack of games where characters other than the player are developing relationships. I can see why there is a bias to the 'hero' being the one that everyone falls for after three conversations. Then this afternoon I was thinking about it and it struck me that Mass Effect 3 does this twice, with Joker/EDI and Garrus/Tali.


Dragon Age 2 had one as well, with Aveline and 'Guardsman Donnic'. I especially liked that Aveline as a romance was impossible, too; it made her appear all the more to be her own character, instead of being another potential love conquest for the player.

#109 Posted by TheSouthernDandy (3810 posts) -

Hell no son, when I was Kratos I romanced those ho's and I romanced them HARD.

Yeah probably. It seems like a real hard thing to do effectively in a game.

#110 Posted by Zekhariah (697 posts) -

Probably not, but that has a lot to do with what games are most of the time. I think it would be more interesting if the lighter side of how romance is treated in media (like the romantic comedy template) were included.

The inclusion often feels weird in games, and clashes a bit with everything else going around time-scale wise. Dragon Age 2 with the date jumps was kind of the only one that justified the characters not being strangers, even if it kept that tradition super awkward and creepy Bioware template.

#111 Edited by Pete0r (71 posts) -

@yummylee: I think I must have found the Aveline story so clumsily written and executed that I must have blocked it from my memory.

Even now thinking about that mission where you shadow them is making me cringe.

#112 Edited by Sursh (243 posts) -

i would like more in better quality. romance has always been a guilty pleasure really, but the characters have to be done right. mass effect for example, just never worked well in believability. shepard was a static brick in personality and the fact that any man/woman would see the appeal in romancing him/her just killed the immersion.

i can't remember enough games where romance was the prime motivator for the story. but i would like to see it become a thing.

#113 Posted by MonkeyKing1969 (2597 posts) -

The biggest problem with romance in games is most games want it to be a tiny part of the game. Just like a romance novel, just like a romantic movie, much of the content NEEDS to be romance for it to work. If a movie uses 80% of a 120 minuet movie to tell ist romance than 90% of ten hour game needs to be about developing the romance. I'm not even sure teh structure of most romance game from Japan is even that made...they just need to be less weird and embarrassing.

Meet, flirt, talk, go on dates, give gifts, solve problems, avoid fights through dialogue choices, etc. A romance game need not re-invent teh wheel it just has to be put together better and with more care then is currently used. Also, not all game that have romance need to be all about romance, but again they have to do what parts they have about romance better.

#114 Edited by Karmosin (210 posts) -

More of this please. The one scene that sells the whole thing for me. Wich is later followed up by one of the most shocking scenes in a video-games. (for me anyway)

I also remember being a little anti towards the kinda lovey-dovey-relationship stuff in persona 4, but then I remembered how I was with my first girlfriend and I started to think it was kinda adorable in all its naivety.

#115 Posted by SuperUnknown (2 posts) -

nah Solid Snake and Otacon is one the great romances in the history of entertainment.

#116 Edited by I_Stay_Puft (3063 posts) -

Too much bromance not enough romance. I want to kill some baddies with my in-game significant other.

#117 Edited by LiquidPrince (15857 posts) -

I need more good/sexy romance that isn't cringe worthy.

#118 Posted by charlie_victor_bravo (948 posts) -

Yes, there needs to be more romance. Games can't be art when they can't even reach 80's action movie sub-plot level when it comes to romances.

#119 Posted by spraynardtatum (2633 posts) -